- How did your passion for cars begin?
- The first time I got behind the wheel at the age of six. My grandfather sat me down on his knees and let me drive the Moskvich-407. At the age of 11, I already drove myself, rode along forest roads in the country, and at 18 I got my license, and since then I have been driving. The boyish hobby remained for life. And the smells of those years - oil, gasoline and leather - entered the mind and are the best stimulant of a good mood. Why do I like old cars? They were actually works of art and individual design. Not like today's, which for the most part are more or less similar. There is no such variety of body styles and interiors.
Yuri Pripachkin, co-owner of the Akado company © from the personal archive of Yuri Pripachkin
- When did you start collecting vintage cars?
- It happened by accident. A close friend of mine came to one of my birthdays and said that the time has finally come when he can give his friend a car. And he gave me an old humpbacked "Zaporozhets". As a joke, of course. It cost $ 300 then. It was he who became the first in my collection. Moreover, the five of us immediately decided to ride it, and getting out, broke off the steering wheel, after which the restoration process began. Many years have passed since then, the collection has grown.
- How many cars are there now?
- More than 50. These are both Soviet and foreign cars. The oldest in the collection is Sears from 1898. Almost all cars that I bought were then restored. And this is not only because it is much cheaper to buy a car for restoration, but because it is more interesting to do it yourself.
I am convinced that the owner should be responsible for the restoration. It's hard to find a car that is 100% authentic to the time it was made. And during restoration, when you make a car not for resale, but for yourself, you are responsible for the quality and condition of components, and for painting, and for engine overhaul. For everything, in general, corresponding to the year of manufacture.
1 of 5 In the collection of Yuri Pripachkin there are more than 50 oldtimers © from the personal archive of Yuri Pripachkin © from the personal archive of Yuri Pripachkin © from the personal archive of Yuri Pripachkin © from the personal archive of Yuri Pripachkin © from the personal archive of Yuri Pripachkin
- How long can it take to restore a retro car?
- Some cars are restored for years - up to five years. Until you find all the components, especially the little things around the cabin: knobs, switches, etc. We are looking at car markets, in the so-called donor cars. Sometimes, in order to assemble one car, you need to buy two or three such donors. And make an absolutely identical car out of them. There is a whole industry in the West that does this. And in this regard, it is sometimes easier to restore imported cars. Usually all the details have to wait for the order, there are people who are professionally engaged in this. Including the manufacture of parts using old technologies. We cooperate with them. Most of them are true retro technology enthusiasts.
- And you yourself can dig under the hood of the car?
- Yes. During the races, you often have to do something yourself. Starting from replacing or burning candles when you fill them in, to changing wheels. There are technical equipment on the track, but they are not always enough for everyone. So you have to be able to do everything yourself. Previously, the profession of a driver required a wide range of knowledge. So, cars of the beginning of the last century are generally very specific: you need to know how to handle them - to set the ignition timing, to start them accordingly, this is a whole story.
1941 Pontiac Eight © Chopard Press Office
- When did you start participating in the rally?
- Like any person who collects something, I needed a place where I could exchange impressions, show my cars and achieve some results in comparison with other collectors. Vintage cars provide a unique opportunity to experience sports excitement. That is, a rally is a presentation of a car not only as an example of art or technological thought, but also as a means of transportation on which you can show the result.
- Is it difficult to become a participant in the Oldtimer Rally?
- No, everything is democratic here. It is enough to have a car that meets the requirements stated in the regulations: it must drive, brake, brake lights, headlights, etc. must work. At the same time, there are no battles between the participants, no one will insert a nail into the tire. Everyone is very friendly and everyone helps each other on the track. Although the sports component is still present. Everyone loves to receive cups, stand on a pedestal and pour champagne on each other.
1 of 6 2014
Chrysler Town & Country Convertible 1949
Absolute Test (cars produced from January 1, 1946 to December 31, 1976), first place - Yuri Pripachkin and Sergey Makarenko © Chopard press service
Cadillac 341 1929
In the nomination "For the will to win" the prize went to the crew of Yuri Pripachkin and Sergei Makarenko, who took part in all 11 races of the Chrysler Town & Country Convertible 1949), 1931 issue, volume dv. 3617 cc cm.
Pontiac Eight 1941 © Chopard Press Office
Yuri Pripachkin and Sergei Makarenko took first place in the Veteran classification in a 1929 Bentley 4.5 L convertible, the oldest car in the 1929 Bentley 4.5 L rally
BUICK 56 COUPE 1931 © Press Office Chopard 2009
Moskvich 407 1960 © Press Office Chopard
- How do you select a car for a specific start?
- There are favorites. But in general, the car needs to be prepared in advance so that it is in the appropriate technical condition. There were times when the car broke down during the rally and had to leave the race. This is very frustrating. And so that this does not happen, we spend time maintaining cars in appropriate condition. And since it is impossible to prepare all the cars, it is quite an expensive pleasure, then you choose the one that is suitable depending on the specifics of the rally. If we talk about LUC Chopard Classic Weekend Rally, it's also a secular story. Look for the year the car was made The first time I took part in it was the Volga GAZ-M-21A, which was used as a taxi in the Soviet years, and my image - a leather jacket, a cap, a narrow tie, a taxi driver's badge - corresponded to that era,when there was a uniform for taxi drivers. By the way, some rallies are musical and stylized. My friends and I once performed as ZZ Thor and caused everyone to amaze. In the USA, we found a fan store where we bought everything, including beards and T-shirts, the jackets were made to order. And there was a matching red Eldorado Cadillac.
Broke down - that's it, get out of the way
- Have you already chosen a car for the Chopard rally in June?
- I'll drive my favorite classic 1949 Chrysler Town & Country Convertible. This is a convertible. After the war, it was in vogue to replace part of the body with wooden parts. It turned out in appearance such a half-boat, half-car. This machine has already been equipped with an automatic transmission, a powerful enough engine. I really like her green leather interior. This is all authentic, the car has remained unchanged since 1949. I bought it in California. There, in a dry climate, cars are well preserved. And all this time she was in the same family.
- Who is your navigator?
- This is my friend Sergei Makarenko, with whom we have been friends for several decades. In fact, he gave me that first "Zaporozhets" and pulled me into this crazy race. In general, we are a team of five crews. It's called "Ginger Bunnies" - after our mascot, which we bought at a charity auction to support sick children. We have won the Chopard Rally in team competition several times.
Chrysler Town & Country Convertible 1949
"Absolute" test, third place - Yuri Pripachkin and Sergey Makarenko
- What episode during the years of your participation in the rally do you remember more than others?
- There were different things. At one of the Chopard rallies, my Bentley broke down 3 km before the finish line. And the four of us pushed him. We crossed the finish line and even got a cup for the will to win. But they lost the main prize, although they were the leaders of the race. True, after that, changes were made to the regulations that the car should come to the finish line only on its own. You won't have to push anymore: if you break down - that's it, leave the race.
- Do you participate in international rallies?
- Yes, we were at the rally in the Baltic States and Ukraine. We haven't reached Europe yet. But I hope that soon there will be more free time and opportunities to do this.
- Do you yourself drive a car in your daily life?
- I drive with a driver during working hours, but as soon as there is any opportunity to get behind the wheel myself, I use it. Because for me it is relaxation, pleasure, and support of form. And I just can't imagine myself without a rudder. And next year I will celebrate 40 years of accident-free driving.>